- Paperback: 159 pages
- Publisher: Gingko Press Inc.; Revised ed. edition (Aug. 1 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1584230703
- ISBN-13: 978-1584230700
- Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 1.5 x 17.8 cm
- Shipping Weight: 113 g
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #110,359 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Medium Is the Massage Paperback – Aug 1 2001
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About the Author
Marshall McLuhan received a Ph D from Cambridge University in 1942. He published the Mechanical Bride (1951), The Gutemberg Galaxy (1962), and Uderstanding Media (1964). His illustrated classics, The Medium is the Massage (1967) and War and Peace in the Global Village (1968), both with Quentin Fiore and Jerome Agel, reflect McLuhan's passion for knowledge, originality, provocation, and insight. Quentin Fiore is one of America's most distinguished graphic designers. His office is in New Jersey. Jermoe Agel has written and produced more than fifty major books, including collaborations with Carl Sagan, Stanley Kubrick, Buckminster Fuller, and Issac Asimov.
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The Book ripped!
I rate 0 because it is cheap glue that attaches the pages, but content is 5/5!
Forty-five years later, I can see how the book's format and the message within presaged the effects of worldwide media and the publishing industry:
"The Medium is the Massage" reveals how the medium, or process, of our time--electric technology--is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social interdependence and every aspect of your personal life. How it is forcing you to reconsider and re-evaluate practically every thought and every institution you formerly took for granted."
The book's appearance, that of mixing visuals and text, reminded me of later novels such as Douglas Coupland's Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture and Dennis Rodman's memoirs Bad As I Wanna Be and Walk on the Wild Side, all of which were written for readers with ever declining attention spans.
After Arab Spring, I could only read the following remark with mouth agape:
"Youth instinctively understands the present environment--the electric drama. It lives mythically and in depth. This is the reason for the great alienation between generations. Wars, revolutions, civil uprisings are interfaces within the new environments created by electric informational media."
Twitter and Facebook are these new environments which affect us all, even those like myself who adamantly remain selectively disconnected. I couldn't come to this conclusion fast enough, for McLuhan stated later:
"The instantaneous world of electric informational media involves all of us, all at once. No detachment or frame is possible."
Technological advances scare some of us, and I count myself among the scaredy-cats. My reaction to dealing with the future? McLuhan must be reading my mind:
"The past went that-a-way. When faced with a totally new situation, we tend always to attach ourselves to the objects, to the flavor of the most recent past. We look at the present through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future. Suburbia lives imaginatively in Bonanza-land."
For an introduction into McLuhan's media studies, The Medium is the Massage is 160 pages of wondrous futurisms. Some of the text seems rather Joycean in structure; I would read passages over and over and the only reason I did not finish this book in one day was that I dwelt on this complex and ungrammatical phraseology. The global village had certainly come to town and McLuhan was its first mayor.
But where's the album? Hello, all you who hold intellectual copyrights on his stuff! Please re-issue this in more modern mediums.
I have a copy of his LP from the 1960s and it is fascinating and remarkable and also ahead of its time. The sampling and meandering drifting beats found in techno/electronica music today hearkens back to this LP. When is it going to be re-issued? The world is waiting and is truly missing out!
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